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Steven Rubio
Berkeley, CA
If I could describe myself in one sentence, I wouldn't need a blog.
Interests: san francisco giants, bruce springsteen, pink, teevee, sleater-kinney
Recent Activity
I google this blog to see if I had ever written anything about John McCain. I only found two examples. Here's the first, from 2004: In the second, aptly titled "fucking dickheads, john mccain edition", from 2008, I added, "McCain... Continue reading
Posted yesterday at Steven Rubio's Online Life
Posted 2 days ago at Steven Rubio's Online Life
That's gorgeous. It's such a perfect track, fortuitously so. You have Duane playing what Eric called the greatest solo ever on a Wilson Pickett track. You've got Duane and the Brothers playing a show in the area where the album was being recorded. You've got Eric, thrilled that Duane wants to join in, and Duane thrilled to be a part of it. You've got Eric writing a lovelorn ballad, and then you've got Duane creating the riff we all know and love. Then a few weeks later, you've got Eric walking in on the drummer, who is playing something on the piano. Eric says let's put that at the end of "Layla". None of this had to happen. I'm guessing you've seen this, but just in case:
Based on YouTube, he can still play some mighty gee-tar. Honestly, what more can we expect? I remember when 461 Ocean Boulevard came out, we thought he sounded healthy at last, and we were happy for him. But, selfishly, we also thought if Layla was any sign, his music was better when he was on heroin. It's the vocals. His guitar work has never flagged. But the emotion behind all the songs on Layla, not just the title cut, but all of them ... he was singing his heart and guts out. And like I say, we can't expect him to keep that up for 50 years. Probably better to slow "Layla" down until it's unrecognizable, than to try to duplicate the original and get it wrong. I posted a video a week or so ago of "Why Does Love Got to Be So Sad?", and in the comments, I added a recent video of him with the Allmans doing the same song. Vocals weren't had, to be honest. But the guitar was just fine, and Derek Trucks does Duane better than Duane did (sacrilege, I know).
Royal Tenenbaums is the #1 example for me of how they screwed up the vinyl: As an example of how director Wes Anderson is clever to no apparent purpose, I point to the soundtrack, which is a wonderful melange of mostly-60s buried treasures like "These Days" by Nico and "She Smiled Sweetly" by the Stones. (He even throws in a cut from Dylan's Self Portrait; what is this shit, indeed.) While each song is welcome in my house any time, their purpose in the movie is never clear. They're good songs, a real wet dream for 60s people, because he doesn't choose the same ones everyone else chooses, and their lyrics generally fit the scenes in which they appear. But he treats them as fetish objects. The scene between Gwyneth Paltrow and Luke Wilson in the tent is the best example. "She Smiles Sweetly" is a great, forgotten song that fits perfectly in the scene, and "Ruby Tuesday" is an excellent tune to close the scene off. But the whole business of her playing vinyl on an old record player ... and setting the needle down so that she is picking the song ... fetishizes vinyl and record players and draws attention to the act of playing as much as it does to the song itself. Since she chooses the song, it must be important to her. But why? When the song came out, she was a toddler if she was born at all. There's nothing in the characterizations of her parents to suggest that in her formative years, they played Between the Buttons for their kids, so there's no reason for her to know the album, nor is there a reason why her "brother" even owns the damn thing on vinyl. It's all precious artifice, and when "Ruby Tuesday" comes on, it's fake artifice, because that's not the next song on the album, which is being obsessive but I think the scene invites it. Why a movie taking place in 2001 would use minor classics of the 60s is left unexplained. It does show Anderson's good taste in music, and perhaps that's it: everything about The Royal Tenenbaums demonstrates the excellence of the filmmakers, but precious little convinces me I'm watching a movie that lives up to that excellence.
Posted Jul 15, 2017 at Steven Rubio's Online Life
See the man with stage fright. Continue reading
Posted Jul 14, 2017 at Steven Rubio's Online Life
We all love the face and the anus, as American as apple pie! Continue reading
Posted Jul 12, 2017 at Steven Rubio's Online Life
Appreciate the comment, and the vote of confidence. I don't usually assign grades to TV series any longer, but I can see the value in a case like this ... GLOW is not an A+, it's not The Leftovers, but it is so much better than it might have been that I want to take my B+ and turn it into an A-. I don't mention it here, but the show is also a bonanza for people who like 80s culture. And wrestling fans will note that GLOW is respectful to the amount of work that goes into rassling. Plus, they got Chavo Guerrero Jr. to advise, i.e. he taught the actresses how to look right (and apparently was so into the details that if someone did a move that was anachronistic, he'd stop them and say "that didn't really become part of the move sets until 1992").
Toggle Commented Jul 10, 2017 on glow, season one at Steven Rubio's Online Life
I have some concerns about my character. Continue reading
Posted Jul 9, 2017 at Steven Rubio's Online Life
Good call ... for all the times I didn't see Hair, I have watched YouTube videos many times, including that "Aquarius". Guess Forman's Hair will go on my never-ending request list.
Toggle Commented Jul 8, 2017 on music friday: hair at Steven Rubio's Online Life
Let the sunshine in. Continue reading
Posted Jul 7, 2017 at Steven Rubio's Online Life
You know as well as I do: this necklace is imitation. Continue reading
Posted Jul 6, 2017 at Steven Rubio's Online Life
Do androids dream of electric sheep? Continue reading
Posted Jul 3, 2017 at Steven Rubio's Online Life
He was due home yesterday, but he ain't here. Continue reading
Posted Jun 30, 2017 at Steven Rubio's Online Life
Here comes McCovey! Continue reading
Posted Jun 29, 2017 at Steven Rubio's Online Life
If you're not doing something different, you're not doing anything. Continue reading
Posted Jun 23, 2017 at Steven Rubio's Online Life
I'll take you to mom no matter what. Continue reading
Posted Jun 21, 2017 at Steven Rubio's Online Life
Posted Jun 19, 2017 at Steven Rubio's Online Life